MSP wants coalition to back post office services

Dennis Robertson outside Alford Post Office
Dennis Robertson outside Alford Post Office

Aberdeenshire West MSP Dennis Robertson is calling on the UK Government to put its money where its mouth is on Post Office service.

He welcomed the new report from the National Federation of SubPostmasters underlining the decline in government services delivered through the network under the previous Labour government, and calls on the present coalition at Westminster to fulfil the promise to secure the future of the Post Office by making the network the ‘front-office’ of government.

The report reveals that, in 2004/2005 government services accounted for nearly half (£576m) of all revenue received by the Post Office but, by 2009/10 this had fallen to around a fifth (£167m) of all Post Office revenue.

Mr Robertson said:“The Tory Lib-Dem Coalition at Westminster has promised to make the post office network the ‘front office of government’ but the reality is that, over the past ten years, there has been a sharp decline in government services available through the local network.

“The decision on the future of the £60 million a year DVLA contract is now a key test of that commitment. The UK Government in London must put its money where its mouth is.

“In 2004/2005 government services accounted for nearly half of all revenue received by the Post Office but, by 2009/10 this had fallen to around a fifth of all Post Office revenue.

“Despite coalition promises, there has been a steady paring of business, with the Department for Work and Pensions, for example, having awarded important contracts to other providers.

“If the DVLA contract is lost it will have a very serious impact on the future of local post offices.